Isaac Russell was born at Windy Haugh, near Alston, England, on April 13, 1807. When he was 10, Isaac and his family moved to Canada, settling near Toronto. Russell married Mary Walton, also from Alston, England, in June 1829.

After being baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Isaac and his family moved to Kirtland.

In 1837, he was called on the first mission to England in the company of Heber C. Kimball, Orson Hyde and others. Shortly after their arrival in England, the first converts in Great Britain were baptized. Isaac was assigned to go to Alston, not too far from the Scottish border.

He labored diligently, and the LDS Church in and around Alston grew to about 60 Mormon members.

After arriving home, he experienced church discipline in a situation that may be misunderstood to this day. Isaac died in Missouri in 1844.

Years later, President Heber C. Kimball said, "Isaac Russell was a good man, a man that I loved, and if there is no one else to see that he is righted, when the time comes, I will see that he is righted myself."